Homeless man who punched 6-year-old girl in Santa Monica arrested after he later assaulted 7-year-old boy, LAPD says

The Los Angeles Police Department said that a homeless man was arrested for two separate, unprovoked attacks on a 6-year-old girl and a 7-year-old boy.

Witnesses said that a man was “acting erratically” while sitting on a bus bench at Main Street and Marine Avenue when he punched a girl in the face as she was walking with her family in Santa Monica on Sunday at about 7 p.m.

Santa Monica Police Department Lt. Erika Aklufi said that the girl was not seriously injured.

Christina Tullock said the family were her friends on a visit from the East Coast and she witnessed the attack on the girl. She said they were just enjoying some ice cream when the man attacked.

“He turned in his seat and he swerved, hit my friend’s six-year-old in the face, and the child fell to the ground,” said Tullock to KTTV-TV.

She said she scooped up the kid and they ran away.

A business owner named Nicole Niss spoke to KABC-TV about the aftermath of the first attack.

“The family ran away but the friend came back and tried to get a picture of them and have been searching for what happened since,” she said. “They came in and asked if we had any footage but unfortunately, our cameras only capture our front door.”

“He was out of control.”

Tullock said she was so fed up with the crime in the city that she came back and followed the man in order to snap a photo and get a good description for police.

“He was out of control, he was totally wide-eyed, he was having some sort of a psychotic break. He needs help. It’s horrendous that this is how we have to live. We’re expected to fend for ourselves,” she added.

“You can’t be six eating ice cream on the sidewalk in the city!” said Tullock with tears in her eyes. “You can’t do it! It’s not safe here!”

A second attack

Days later, the same man allegedly attacked a 7-year-old on the Venice boardwalk on Thursday. No other information was available about that attack.

Police said they identified the man as 23-year-old Ahsante Lamar Morgan and were able to arrest him. They confirmed that he was homeless.

“An incident like this one is an affront to public safety and will not be tolerated,” said the Santa Monica Police Department. “Even more so that a child was involved. Any crime committed in Santa Monica is a crime too many; our department stands strong in the face of anyone who chooses to victimize those who are in this city.”

Police said they were deploying the Homeless Liaison Program Team in order to provide resources to the homeless of the city.

Tullock had a message for those wanting to visit the popular California destinations.

“Don’t come to Venice or Los Angeles, it’s not safe if you have children or elderly people with you. Don’t come visit us, it is not under control,” she said.

Here’s a news report about the assaults:

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